Kinda Like Hair Club for Men

Back in the mid-'90s, bands weren't supposed to dig '70s hard-rock groups like Grand Funk Railroad or Blue Öyster Cult. This was before the White Stripes, before Wolfmother, before Mastodon. Sure, grunge acts like Nirvana and Soundgarden professed a love for Led Zep, but Grand Funk Railroad was dirtier, dingier, hairier. But the boys in Mensclub — guitarist and vocalist Aaron Nudelman, bassist John Blackwell, and drummer Tom Galbraith — weren't afraid to be uncool. These local lads knew what the Stooges and MC5 knew: that loud would conquer all, that playing shows in dingy basements for 25 mohawked punks could be hella fun, that being paid in cheap beer and growing big sideburns was what rock was all about. And that if you wrote lyrics as funny as the ones in "Ass, Gas, or Grass" and "Let's Take Turns Blowing Ourselves Away" — and played your guitars at 11 and jammed with your shirts off — then chicks would get with you. It worked in the '90s, and it will work (we hope) today, when Mensclub reunites for one loud, guitar-riffing, drum-soloing, bass-thumping show as part of the SF Bike Messenger Reunion weekend. The threesome (who continue to play in bands like Hot Lunch, the Pirate Band, and the Blank Stares) will be joined by reuniting '80s cowpunks Short Dogs Grow, who were signed to Rough Trade back when bands like Girls were still sucking their mommas' teats.

Mensclub plays with Short Dogs Grow, the Street Lyons, and John Thaxton.
Sun., Oct. 11, 1 p.m., 2009

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